Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Euphorbia

A very large, variable genus of plants including the Poinsettia and many succulents. Euphorbias range anywhere from groundcover to 100 foot succulent trees.
The milky, sticky white sap may cause skin irritation in some people. Never touch the eyes after pruning since the sap can cause chemical burns...wear disposable gloves while pruning and wash hands after.
Deer and rabbit resistant, and people shouldn't eat them either...they are poisonous.
Propagation is from seed ( soaked 12 hours in hot water before sowing ), division and basal cuttings.
It is recommended to plant hardy species during autumn or spring.
They do not like root disturbance once established and division is not needed to maintain vigor.
If you really enjoy growing Euphorbias...there is a group for you

The International Euphorbia Society ( http://www.euphorbia-international.org/home.htm

Additional species of potential value in cold climates may be found on this external link:
http://www.efloras.org/florataxon.aspx?flora_id=120&taxon_id=112355

* photo of unknown internet source


Euphorbia amygdaloides ( Wood Spurge )
A fast growing, upright, woody perennial, reaching a maximum size of 32 inches x 4+ feet, that is native to temperate Eurasia ( Iceland to Poland; south to Portugal to Turkey to the Caucasus ). It may be deciduous to evergreen depending on climate.
It can be used as a groundcover.
The obovate leaves are up to 3 + x 0.8 inches in size.
The dense foliage is glossy green, sometimes with a purplish tinge.
The greenish-yellow flowers are borne on previous years growth during late spring into early summer.
Hardy zones 5 to 9 in partial shade on well drained soil. Prune back after flowering to encourage new growth from lower down in the plant. Very drought tolerant.

'Purpurea' ( Purple Wood Spurge )
The purple ( deep red at first ) foliage contrasts very nicely with the flowers and is a great companion plant to the yellow variety of Japanese Forest Grass.

* photo taken on April 27 2012 in Columbia, MD

* photo taken on June 28 2012 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on Apr 14 2013 in Columbia, MD


'Red Velvet'
Fast growing, forming a clump up to 1.7 x 2 feet in size.
The foliage is bright red at first, turning to deep blackish-red during summer. The foliage then turns back to bright red during autumn.
Hardy zones 6 to 9.

* photo taken on Apr 24 2015 in Elkridge, MD


'Ruby Glow'
A dense and compact improved form of 'Purpurea'; reaching up to 2 x 2 feet.
The foliage is bright red at first, later deepening to blackish-red. The leaf undersides and stems are deep red.
The showy bright yellow flowers borne mid to late spring contrast nicely with the foliage.
This plant looks stunning when combined with Blue Sedge or Blue Fescue ornamental grasses. It also looks stunning in containers.
Hardy zones 6 to 9 preferring sandy, well drained soils in full sun to partial shade.

* photo taken on July 25 2013 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on Nov 3 2013 in Columbia, MD


Euphorbia 'Blue Haze'
A spreading, evergreen perennial, reaching up to 8 ( 15 in bloom ) inches x 2 feet. The narrow linear foliage is powdery bright blue. The bright greenish-yellow flowers are borne during spring. It is sterile and does not produce seed. Hardy zones 6a to 10 ( reports of 5 on protected sites ) in full sun on moderately moist to dry, well drained soil. It is deer and rabbit resistant.


Euphorbia characias
A nonbranching, upright, clumping, semi-evergreen to evergreen, subshrubby perennial, reaching a maximum size of 6 x 5 feet, that is native to southern Europe and the Mediterranaean.
The leathery, linear to narrow elliptical leaves, up to 6 ( rarely over 4.5 ) inches in length, are deep blue-gray.
The mid-yellow to greenish ( centered brown ) bracts are borne in rounded, dense, terminal heads of up to 20 during mid spring to early summer.
Hardy zones 7 to 9 ( 6 on protected site such as a south facing wall ) in full sun to partial shade on dry, humus-rich or sandy, well drained soil. It is drought tolerant but may not enjoy really hot humid summers. Good drainage is a must and if water drainage is questionable, either plant with the crown slightly above grade or better yet in raised beds or containers. They are light feeders so don't damage the plants by overfertilizing. It is not often prone insects or diseases, these plants are very sensitive to insecticides ( esp imidacloprid ) which should not be used around them. In early summer after blooming is complete, cut back entire spent flowering stems to near the base of the plant to encourage vigorous regrowth.
Propagation is from division during autumn or spring as well as basal cuttings taken during spring. Transplant during spring only unless in a very mild climate.

* photos of unknown internet source



* photo taken on June 30 2013 @ U.S. National Arboretum, DC


'Glacier Blue'
Reaches up to 2 x 2.5 feet and is considered more vigorous and sturdy than 'Tasmanian Tiger'.
The blue-gray leaves are boldly edged creamy-white. It looks great contrasted with deep red colored plants.
The creamy-yellow flowers are striped blue-gray. They persist through the spring.
It thrives in both full sun or partial shade.

* photo taken on June 3 2016 in Columbia, MD

* photo taken on July 1 2016 in Elkridge, MD

* photo taken on Dec 20 2016 in Columbia, MD


'Tasmanian Tiger'
Dense and rounded in habit, it reaches a maximum size of 3 x 3 feet though often only half that.
It makes a great plant for continers.
The foliage is deep gray-green and boldly margined white.
The pale creamy-white flowers are borne during spring.
It thrives in both full sun or partial shade.

* photos taken on May 3 2014 in Baltimore Co., MD


var wulfenii ( Evergreen Spurge )
Upright and very bushy, almost a shrub that is fast growing and can reach up to 6.5 x 6 feet. It is a bold plant that is great as a focal point.
The evergreen leaves are leathery and deep green. The yellowish-green flowers are borne in huge broader clusters from early to late spring.
Grows in most well drained soil and is hardy from zones 6 to 9

* photo taken on May 16 2011 in Washington, D.C.

* photos taken @ Smithsonian Inst, Wash., DC on Aug 25 2014

* photos taken on Oct 21 2014 @ Smithsonian Inst., Washington, DC

* historic archive photo


Euphorbia corollata ( Flowering Spurge )
A very attractive, slow-spreadng, long-lived, rhizomatous perennial, reaching a maximum size of 3.3 x 3 ( rarely over 2 ) feet, that is native to prairies and open woodlands in eastern North America ( from central South Dakota to Michigan's Upper Peninsula to Grand Bend, Ontario to Port Dover, Ontario to southeast Quebec & Maine; south to central Texas to far northern Florida ). In the Windsor/Essex County, Ontario region; it was sporadic in the Point Pelee area and abundant on the Ohio shore during the 1800s. It was abundant at Detroit during the presettlement era.
The attractive foliage is blue-green, turning to orange to deep red during autumn. The linear to oblong leaves are up to 3 inches in length.
The abundant, tiny, pure-white flowers are borne on domed clusters during mid to late summer ( all summer long in south ), repeating during autumn if cut back after the first flush.
Hardy zones 3 to 8 in full sun to partial shade on just about any well drained soil. Heat and very drought tolerant.
If it gets too leggy, just cut it back to 6 inches in height, and watch it rejuvenate.

* USDA-NRCS PLANTS Database

* photos taken @ U.S. Botanical Garden, Wash., DC on Aug 25 2014

* photos taken on Oct 21 2014 @ U.S. Botanical Gardens, Washington, DC


Euphorbia cyparissias ( Cypress Spurge )
A very fast growing, rhizome-spreading groundcover perennial, reaching a maximum size of 2.3 x 17 ( usually under 0.5 ) feet, that is a widespread European native. It can be invasive and is best used on poor, drier soil where it is less likely to get into trouble.
The attractive fine-textured, linear leaves, up to 1.6 x 0.1 inches in size, are mid-green.
The foliage may develop a reddish tinge in hot sun or during drought.
The greenish-yellow bracts are borne in heads up to 2 inches in length, from late spring to late summer.
The flowers are insignificant. Hardy zones 4 to 8 ( possibly 3...naturalized locally as far north as Haliburton Co. and Tobermory, Ontario as well as west of Dawson Creek in northern British Columbia ) in full sun to partial shade on alkaline, well drained soil. Very drought tolerant, it even thrives on pure sand.

* photo taken on July 3 2010 in Columbia, MD

* photo taken on Apr 18 2011

* photos taken on May 17 2013 in Columbia, MD



'Fens Ruby'
Compact in habit, reaching to 16 x 40 inches in 5 years. Ruby red new foliage, later turning to bluish-green.
The yellow flowerheads have bright red bracts.
* photo taken @ Smithsonian Inst, Wash., DC on Aug 25 2014


'Orange Man'
Orange flowers in spring.

Euphorbia dulcis
A perennial, reaching up to 2.3 x 2 feet, that is native from western Europe to Russia. It is naturalized in the British Isles though not native there. It is also reported as locally naturalizing in Sauble Beach, Ontario.
The oblanceolate leaves borne in whorls are bright green to bronze-green, turning to yellow and red during autumn.
The greenish-yellow flowers are borne late spring into early summer.
Hardy zones 4 to 8 in partial shade on moist, humus-rich, well drained soil.

'Chameleon'
A rhizomatous perennial, reaching a maximum size of 2.6 x 2 feet, with stunning deep reddish-purple foliage. The foliage turns intense glowing red during autumn.
The bright greenish-yellow flowers are borne in clusters during late spring to early summer.
Hardy zones 4 to 8 in full sun to partial shade on well drained soil.

Euphorbia epithymoides ( Cushion Spurge )
Also called Euphorbia polychroma. A fast growing to invasive, rounded, bushy, clump-forming perennial, reaching a maximum size of 28 inches x 3 feet, that is native to Europe ( from southern Germany to the Ukraine; south to Greece ).
The ovate to oval leaves, up to 2.8 x 1.3 inches, are bright to deep green, turning intensely deep red during late autumn.
The bright yellow bracts are borne in heads, up to 3.2 inches across, during late spring into early summer.
Hardy zones 2 to 8 in full sun to partial shade on well drained soil. Extremely drought tolerant. Cut plants back to about 4 inches in height immediately after flowering to encourage a more compact dense habit. Resents transplanting.

* photos taken on Aug 1 2013 in Stratford, Ontario

* photo taken @ Smithsonian Inst, Wash., DC on Aug 25 2014

* historical archive photo

* photos taken on Nov 19 2016 @ London Town Gardens, Edgewater, MD


'Bonfire'
Reaches up to 1.5 x 3 feet, with foliage that is bronze-green at first, turning to intense deep red during summer. It is a great substitute for Blackbird Euphorbia.

'First Blush'
The bright green foliage is boldly variegated with a pink or white margin. The foliage remains attractive all season but the variegation may fade by late summer.

'Purpurea'
Very rare but beautiful purple stemmed and leaved form.

Euphorbia 'Excalibur'
A moderate growing, non-invasive, clump-forming perennial, reaching a maximum size of 4.5 x 2.5 feet.
The foliage is very attractive, especially during spring when it is tinted red.
The leaves are deep gray-green with a rich deep red margin and a creamy-white midrib.
The long lasting, yellow flowers and bracts, are borne all summer long.
Hardy zones 5 to 8 in full sun to partial shade, requiring cool to moderate summers.
Deer resistant.

Euphorbia griffithii ( Griffith's Spurge )
A fast growing to invasive, rhizomatous, shrubby perennial, reaching a maximum size of 4 x 4 ( rarely over 3 ) feet, that is native to mountain forest in Bhutan in the Himalayas.
The lance-shaped leaves, up to 5 x 1.3 inches, are mid-green with pink veins.
The foliage turns very attractive red during autumn.
The yellow ( with deep orange-red bract ) flowers are borne in heads, up to 4 inches across, during late spring to early summer, sometimes even into late summer.
Hardy zones 3 to 8 in full sun to partial shade on well drained soil.

'Dexter'
Reaches up to 4 feet, with intense orangish-red flowers contrasting with deep bronze-green foliage.

'Fireglow'
Fast growing with even more intense colored fiery orange flowerheads, red stems and reddish-green foliage.

* photos taken on Aug 1 2013 in Stratford, Ontario


Euphorbia 'Helena's Blush'
A fast growing, semi-evergreen shrubby perennial. reaching up to 2 x 2 feet, after only a single season.
The foliage is green with bold creamy-white margins that turn red during winter.
The greenish-yellow flowers are borne during early spring.
Hardy zones 6 to 10 in full sun to partial shade on well drained soil. It is very drought tolerant. Cut back hard after blooming to encourage dense habit. Deer and rabbit resistant.

* photos taken on June 3 2012 in Howard Co., MD

Euphorbia hyberna
A dense clumping, herbaceous perennial, reaching up to 2 x 3 feet, that is native to western Europe ( from the British Isles; south to Spain to northern Italy ). It is rare in England, is mostly found in mountains in mainland Europe.
The oval leaves are mid blue-green with a white midrib above. The foliage of some plants from mainland Europe populations turn red during late summer.
The flowers and the bracts are bright yellow. They are borne mid to late spring.
Hardy zones 5 to 8 in partial shade on moist, well drained soil.

Euphorbia x martinii
A hybrid between Euphorbia characias and R. amagdalyoides 'Rubra' forming an evergreen clump up to 3 x 2.6 feet with gray-green leathery foliage. The new growth is flushed burgundy. The lime-green flowers are borne on clusters up to 6 inches during early summer. Looks great with Persicaria 'Red Dragon'.
Hardy zones 6 to 8 ( 2nd year or older plants may survive in zone 5 on protected sites ) in full sun to partial shade on light, well drained soil. It is very heat and drought tolerant. They are light feeders so don't damage the plants by overfertilizing. It is not often prone to insects or diseases, these plants are very sensitive to insecticides ( esp imidacloprid ) which should not be used around them. Using certain insecticides on these plants will often cause complete defoliation as well as stunting of growth often causing loss of plant. Transplant during spring only unless in a very mild climate. Cut back flowering stalks hard after blooming to encourage new growth lower down in the plant. Wait until flowering is finished and new buds are forming lower down in the plant or you may actually slow down the growth.

* photo taken on Sep 25 2012 in Columbia, MD

* photo taken @ U.S. Botanical Garden, Wash., DC on Aug 25 2014

* photo taken on June 29 2016 in Columbia, MD


'Ascot Rainbow'
A fast growing, semi-evergreen shrubby perennial, reaching up to 2 x 3 feet while in bloom, 1.5 feet in height before blooming.
The foliage is blue-green with bold golden-yellow margins that turn red during winter.
The greenish-yellow flowers are borne during early spring.
Hardy zones 6 to 8 in full sun to partial shade on well drained soil. It is very drought tolerant. Cut back hard after blooming to encourage dense habit.
Deer and rabbit resistant.

* photos taken on Sep 25 2012 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on Mar 20 2013 in Ellicott City, MD

* photos taken on Apr 26 2013 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on Nov 10 2014 in Columbia, MD

* photo taken on Sep 2 2015 in Columbia, MD

* photo taken on June 29 2016 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on Aug 12 2016 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on Sep 23 2016 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on Nov 14 2016 in Columbia, MD


'Blackbird'
A compact, bushy, evergreen perennial, reaching up to 2 x 2 feet, with velvety, very deep purple foliage. Besides being a great landscape plant, it looks spectacular in patio planters.
The foliage constrasts nicely with the yellowish-green flowers borne in large clusters during early spring.

* photos taken on Aug 18 2013 in Columbia, MD

* photo taken on July 24 2014 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on Sep 13 2014 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on Nov 1 2014 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on July 15 2015 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on Aug 11 2015 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on Aug 31 2015 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on Dec 6 2015 in Columbia, MD


'Jade Dragon'
A dense, mounding, evergreen perennial, reaching up to 4 x 3 ( rarely over 2.5 ) foot.
The leaves are pointed, narrow obovate in shape.
The purplish-gray foliage contrasts with yellowish-green flowers borne during early spring. The flowers are borne on huge heads up to a foot across.
Hardy zones 7 to 9 in full sun.

'Rudolph'
Reaches up to 16 ( 24 to 36 in flower ) inches in height.
The new foliage is red, later turning to deep green giving a Poinsettia effect.

* photo taken on Jul 30 2013 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on Mar 1 2017 in Columbia, MD

Euphorbia myrsinites ( Donkey-Tail Spurge )
A fast growing, trailing, evergreen perennial, reaching a maximum size of 15 inches x 2.5 ( rarely over 1 foot ) feet, that is native to Eurasia ( southern Spain to Turkestan ). Excellent for trailing over walls and in the rock garden.
The sharp-tipped, obovate, fleshy, succulent leaves, up to 1.7 inches in length, are blue-gray. The leaves are spirally arranged around the stems. In colder climates, it may become deciduous but emerges very early during spring.
The greenish-yellow bracts are borne in terminal clusters up to 4 inches across, during mid to late spring. The color looks great mixes with red Tulips.
Hardy zones 3 to 8 in full sun to partial shade on well drained soil. Extremely heat and drought and also humidity tolerant.

* photos taken @ Smithsonian Inst, Wash., DC on Aug 25 2014

* photos taken @ Smithsonian Inst, Wash., DC on Aug 25 2014

* photos taken on Oct 23 2014 @ Smithsonian Inst, Wash., DC

* historical archive photo

* excellent photo link found on internet
http://plants.nature4stock.com/?page_id=729

Euphorbia nicaeensis
A clumping perennial, reaching up to 2.5 x 1.5 feet in size, that is native to Eurasia ( from southern France to central Russia; south to Portugal to Turkey to the Caucasus ).
The fleshy foliage is grayish-blue. The narrow, oblong-leaves are up to 0.7 inches wide.
The greenish-yellow flower heads are up to 2.5 feet in height. The flowers are borne late spring to mid-summer.
Hardy zones 7 to 10 in full sun on dry, well drained soil.

Euphorbia palustris
A vigorous but not invasive, upright, clumping, woody-based perennial, reaching a maximum size of 6.5 x 5 ( rarely over 5 ) feet, that is native to Eurasia ( from Sweden to Siberia; south to Spain, Turkey and the Caucasus ).
The thick, willowy leaves, up to 3.2 x 0.8 inches, are bright green, turning orange or red during autumn.
The bright yellow bracts are borne in heads, up to 6 inches across, during late spring to early summer.
Hardy zones 3 to 8 in full sun to partial shade on moist to wet soil.
Flood and heavy clay tolerant, it even grows in shallow water but will also tolerate much drier sites.

* photos taken on May 16 2010 @ Cylburn Arboretum, Baltimore, MD



Euphorbia rigida ( Blue Euphorbia )
A perennial, reaching up to 2 x 5 feet, that is a widespread native to around the eastern Mediterranean and northern Iran.
The succulent, stiff, narrow, evergreen foliage is bright bluish-gray, occasionally with purple flushing. The leaves, up to 2 inches long, are spirally arranged.
The large, bright yellow flowers are borne during late winter.
Hardy zones 7 to 10 in full sun on very well drained soil. In cool summer climates such as the British Isles, it should be planted in on a warm site such as against a south facing wall.

Euphorbia robbiae
A very aggressive, fast growing, spreading, evergreen perennial, reaching up to 32 inches x 4 + feet ( rarely over 1.5 feet in height ), that is native to western Asia. It forms a very attractive, evergreen groundcover. Invasive on some sites, it is rhizomatous unlike closely related Euphorbia amygdaloides.
The leathery leaves, up to 4.3 x 1.3 inches, are glossy deep blackish-green.
The leaves are borne in rosettes at the ends of the stems.
The greenish-yellow bracts are borne in heads during early summer.
Hardy zones 5 to 8 ( 4 on protected sites ) in sun or shade on well drained soil.
Very tolerant of shade, poor soil, extreme drought and dry shade under trees. It is free of pests or disease.

* photos taken on April 11 2010 in Washington, D.C.


* photo taken on October 15 2010 in Howard County, MD

* photo taken on July 2011 in Columbia, MD

* photo taken on Aug 20 2011 @ Brookside Gardens, Wheaton, MD

* photos taken on Aug 25 2011 @ Scott Arboretum, Swarthmore College, PA

* photos taken on May 13 2012 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on Aug 18 2013 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on Sep 8 2014 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on July 1 2015 in Columbia, MD

* photo taken on July 9 2015 in Columbia, MD

* photo taken on Feb 23 2017 in Columbia, MD

* photos taken on Apr 19 2017 in Columbia, MD


Euphorbia schillingii
A clumping, shrubby perennial, reaching up to 4 x 5 feet, that is native to mountains in western Nepal.
The narrow, elliptic leaves are up to 5 x 0.8 inches in size. The foliage is luxuriant bright green.
The yellow-green ( with round yellowish-green bracts ) flattened flowerheads are borne mid-summer to early autumn.
Hardy zones 6 to 9 in full sun to partial shade on moist, well drained soil.

Euphorbia seguieriana
A woody based, clumping perennial, reaching up to 2 x 2.7 feet in size, that is native from central Europe, east to Siberia to Pakistan.
The narrow, pointed, linear leaves, up to 1.5 inches in length, are leathery and blue-green.
The yellow ( incl. bracts ) flowers are borne on large heads during summer.
The stems are blue-green.
Hardy zones 5 to 9 in full sun on very well drained soil. It is very tolerant of drought.

Euphorbia sikkimensis
A vigorous, rhizome-spreading, upright perennial, reaching a maximum size of 6 x 6 feet, that is native from the eastern Himalayas to southern China and northern Vietnam.
The narrow, elliptic leaves, up to 5.5 x 1.3 inches, are pinkish at first, turning to luxuriant mid-green with red leaf veins.
The young shoots are also red. The deep yellow bracts are borne on flat heads, up to 8 inches across, during early summer.
Hardy zones 6 to 9 in full sun to partial shade on moist soil. Propagation is from seed or division during early spring.

Euphorbia villosa
A dense, clumping perennial, reaching up to 4 x 4 feet, that is native to moist meadows and open woodlands of Eurasia ( from France to Siberia; south to the Mediterranean ).
The oblong leaves are blue-green.
The yellow flowers are borne late spring into early summer.
Hardy zones 5 to 8 in partial shade on just about any moist soil.

TROPICAL / DESERT CLIMATE EUPHORBIAS

Euphorbia abyssinica

* historic archive photo


Euphorbia cotiniifolia
A moderate growing, large shrub to small tree, reaching a maximum height of 30 feet, that is native from Mexico to South America.
Hardy zones 10 to 12 in full sun on well drained soil. It is not salt tolerant and does not enjoy wind.

* photos taken on Aug 20 2011 @ Brookside Gardens, Wheaton, MD


* photo of unknown internet source
* photo taken @ U.S. Botanical Garden, Wash., DC on Aug 25 2014


Euphorbia ingens
A moderate growing, small tree, reaching up to 40 feet.
Very drought tolerant.

Euphorbia millii

* photo taken @ U.S. Botanical Garden, Wash., DC on Aug 25 2014

* photo of unknown internet source


Euphorbia punicea

* photos taken @ U.S. Botanical Garden, Wash., DC on Aug 25 2014
Euphorbia stenoclada ( Silver Thicket )

* photos taken on Aug 15 2014 @ Rawlings Conservatory, Baltimore, MD


Euphorbia tiraucalli ( Pencil Bush )
A moderate growing, small tree, reaching up to 30 x 10 feet in size with a trunk diameter of 6 inches.
Hardy zones 9 to 11.

* photo taken @ U.S. Botanical Garden, Wash., DC on Aug 25 2014


'Sticks of Fire'

* photo taken @ U.S. Botanical Garden, Wash., DC on Aug 25 2014

* photo of unknown internet source


Euphorbia trigonii

* photo taken on Aug 15 2014 @ Rawlings Conservatory, Baltimore, MD

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